Upstairs Circus, a booze-fueled arts and crafts bar, is coming to the North Loop


Do you need another excuse to drink? Upstairs Circus invites you to imbibe while creating cool paintings, jewelry, and home items.

"It's kind of a next level take on the wine and painting concept that's been growing in the Twin Cities," co-founder Matt Johannsen told Minnepaolis/St. Paul Business Journal this week.

The Denver-based company has announced that it will be opening its first out-of-state spot next summer in the Washington, formerly the Sex World Building, in downtown Minneapolis. (Don't panic: Sex World isn't going anywhere; they're on a lease.)

The projects offered include leatherworking, painting, yarn art, and jewelry. There are pop-art paintings, leather-detailed flasks, concrete coasters, and infinity scarves. On the website, each project description includes a skill level, and items take anywhere from one to three hours to complete.

It's not cheap, however. Evenings will set you back $35 to $40. So if you're broke, you might want to stick to coloring nights at your local brewpub or $5 art nights with the Grown-Up Club. But the stuff on Upstairs Circus' website gallery suggests that the projects are pretty fool-proof, and you end up with something nice after an evening.

The location will also offer a full bar, with cocktails, wine, and beer. There will be an emphasis on Minnesota craft beer.

The corner of Washington and Second Avenue North has also been spruced up in recent months with men's clothing retailer Bonobos and restaurant Red Rabbit across the street.